7.2/10
684
8 user 13 critic

The Learning Tree (1969)

The story, set in Kansas during the 1920s, covers less than a year in the life of a black teenager, and documents the veritable deluge of events which force him into sudden manhood. The ... See full summary »

Director:

Writers:

(novel), (screenplay)
Reviews
2 wins. See more awards »
Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Drama | History | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

Languid look at the Gullah culture of the sea islands off the coast of South Carolina and Georgia where African folk-ways were maintained well into the 20th Century and was one of the last ... See full summary »

Director: Julie Dash
Stars: Cora Lee Day, Alva Rogers, Barbarao
Losing Ground (1982)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A comedy-drama about a Black American female philosophy professor and her insensitive, philandering, and flamboyant artist husband who are having a marital crisis. When the wife goes off on... See full summary »

Director: Kathleen Collins
Stars: Billie Allen, Gary Bolling, Clarence Branch Jr.
Bordertown (1935)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Johnny Ramirez rises from bouncer to partner in Charlie Roark's border town casino. Charlie's wife Marie loves Johnny, but Johnny loves society woman Dale. Marie kills her husband, making ... See full summary »

Director: Archie Mayo
Stars: Paul Muni, Bette Davis, Margaret Lindsay
Crime | Drama | Film-Noir
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

A Los Angeles socialite kills a man while home alone one night and claims he was an intruder she did not know. It seems like a clear case of self defense until the story hits the papers and people connected to the dead man come forward.

Director: Vincent Sherman
Stars: Ann Sheridan, Lew Ayres, Zachary Scott
Leadbelly (1976)
Biography | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

The life of Blues and folk singer Huddie Leadbetter, nicknamed Leadbelly is recounted. Covering the good times and bad from his 20s to 40s. Much of that time was spent on chain gangs in the... See full summary »

Director: Gordon Parks
Stars: Roger E. Mosley, Paul Benjamin, Madge Sinclair
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

At Madame Zenobia's illegal nightclub, when Steve Jackson and Wardell Franklin get robbed of their wallets containing a winning lottery ticket, they set out to recover it.

Director: Sidney Poitier
Stars: Sidney Poitier, Bill Cosby, Harry Belafonte
Action | Comedy | Crime
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Two Atlanta men raise funds for their charity by rigging boxing matches in New Orleans but their tricks attract the mob's attention.

Director: Sidney Poitier
Stars: Sidney Poitier, Bill Cosby, Calvin Lockhart
Claudine (1974)
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.3/10 X  

In the 1970s Harlem, garbage collector Roop feels intimidated by the idea of dating Claudine who is a single mother of six on welfare.

Director: John Berry
Stars: Diahann Carroll, James Earl Jones, Lawrence Hilton-Jacobs
Comedy | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Quick-tempered yet likable Biff Grimes falls for the beautiful Virginia Brush, but he is not the only young man in the neighborhood who is smitten with her.

Director: Raoul Walsh
Stars: James Cagney, Olivia de Havilland, Rita Hayworth
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7/10 X  

A young girl in a bombed out part of London wants to make something beautiful so she plants a garden in a ruined church with the help of her friend. All the adults in her life don't ... See full summary »

Director: Philip Leacock
Stars: June Archer, Christopher Hey, Brian Hammond
Lonelyhearts (1958)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Eager to land a journalistic position, Adam White goes to work as an advice-giving newspaper columnist. His editor, Shrike, takes pleasure in browbeating his alcoholic wife Florence for her... See full summary »

Director: Vincent J. Donehue
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Myrna Loy, Robert Ryan
The Search (1948)
Certificate: Passed Drama | War
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.9/10 X  

In post-war Berlin, an American private helps a lost Czech boy find his mother.

Director: Fred Zinnemann
Stars: Montgomery Clift, Ivan Jandl, Aline MacMahon
Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kyle Johnson ...
Newt
Alex Clarke ...
Marcus
Estelle Evans ...
Sarah
...
Kirky
Mira Waters ...
Arcella
Joel Fluellen ...
Uncle Rob
...
Silas Newhall
Richard Ward ...
Booker Savage
...
Judge Cavanaugh
...
Miss McClintock
Carol Lamond ...
Big Mabel
...
Doc Tim Cravens
Jimmy Rushing ...
Chappie Logan (as James Rushing)
...
Spikey
Felix Nelson ...
Jack Winger
Edit

Storyline

The story, set in Kansas during the 1920s, covers less than a year in the life of a black teenager, and documents the veritable deluge of events which force him into sudden manhood. The family relationships and enmities, the fears, frustrations and ambitions of the black teenager in small-town America are explored with a strong statement about human values. Written by alfiehitchie

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

A film by Gordon Parks based on his novel See more »

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

M | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

13 March 1970 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Com o Terror na Alma  »

Filming Locations:

 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The first major studio feature film directed by an African-American (Gordon Parks). See more »

Connections

Edited into Afro Promo (1997) See more »

Soundtracks

My Baby's Gone
Sung by Jimmy Rushing
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Beautifully photographed, but awkwardly scripted
21 July 2001 | by (Houston, Texas) – See all my reviews

The Learning Tree is one of those milestone films that one wishes were much better than it is. Parks' genius for the image comes through time and again, particularly in the opening sequence of the tornado and the horseback riders silhouetted by the sun. The milieu--rural Kansas in the 1920s--is unusual for a film focusing on racial conflict in the U.S., and that alone makes for an interesting film concept. But Parks' lack of film directorial and writing experience mars what could have been a major production. The dialogue in particular is often stilted and forced; too often the characters read their lines as though they're afraid they'll forget something. As a result, there's little real warmth or connection between characters. The other big problem here seems to be flow; each brief episode seems encapsulated, with new characters popping up left and right and then disappearing and reappearing without much development. Case in point: the series of episodes after the arrest. Who exactly are all of these new characters? What is the relationship between the white and black families, and between individuals in both groups? They come, they go, they reappear, but we're lucky to have caught their names. All in all, a much stronger film would have resulted from a collaboration of different screenwriter, director, and cinematographer, rather than having Parks run the whole show. If any film deserves a remake, it's The Learning Tree.


20 of 30 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?